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Do a little or do a lot - help the trail crew in Sierra NF

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Re: Do a little or do a lot - help the trail crew in Sierra

Postby AlmostThere » Fri Mar 30, 2018 3:33 pm

rightstar76 wrote:It looks like http://www.theodoresolomonstrail.org/ is no longer working. Are there plans for a new site?


There is no official website for it. There are two books, one by Dennis Gagnon and the other by Gary Buscombe. There is a Facebook page for folks who have hiked it or plan to. And there is our trail crew, trying to get official status for the trail. If that happens some of us might form an official association and set up an official website.



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Re: Do a little or do a lot - help the trail crew in Sierra

Postby rightstar76 » Tue Apr 03, 2018 1:16 am

Thanks for the heads up AlmostThere. Didn't know about the Buscombe book. Looks like it's independently published on Amazon. I think I found the Facebook group (private). It's https://www.facebook.com/groups/583973691738755/

Since your crew wants the trail to be official (I'm assuming I read your post correctly), a website advocating to make the trail official might speed up the process.
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Re: Do a little or do a lot - help the trail crew in Sierra

Postby AlmostThere » Tue Apr 03, 2018 9:53 am

Making the trail official will get people hiking it, which will get it more trail maintenance. But it needs to be cleared through before we start to "advertise" it in the best interests of safety. For the kinds of get-up-and-hike without experience hikers that throng to the JMT, we don't advocate the TST at all right now.

We may set up a website, but there are other things to do first. Right now we are doing those.
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Re: Do a little or do a lot - help the trail crew in Sierra

Postby AlmostThere » Wed Apr 25, 2018 9:46 am

A one day intro to trailwork is being held at Kokanee work center near Huntington Lake, on May 5. See the Wilderness Corps Meetup for details - https://www.meetup.com/Wilderness-Corps ... 249202479/

This is a useful orientation for volunteers who want to scout trails. Experienced eyes can identify and better describe the work that needs to be done on trails to maintain them to Forest Service standards.
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Re: Do a little or do a lot - help the trail crew in Sierra

Postby AlmostThere » Mon May 07, 2018 8:09 am

Last weekend some of our volunteers visited the Rancheria Falls trail near Huntington Lake to assess how much work needs to be done to this high traffic, short trail - we have some hours of treadwork to complete, as the melt and last year's precip have eroded some sections, as well as some brushwork. We will also be needing to provide some education to visitors, as the toilet paper blight and the obvious habit of flinging trash off the trail are going to be ongoing issues.

On May 18, we are taking a small group on a two night trip into Dinkey Wilderness to begin the season by clearing trees out of trails. Saw work is less taxing than carrying a backpack. No experience is necessary for this event, and some PPE can be provided to you. All tools will be provided. We give a tailgate safety talk and orient new volunteers on the fly. Our work hours are 8-5 and each evening we enjoy time to socialize, fish and swim. Participants can be expected to carry 1 - 10 lbs of tools as we all share the load. Typical tools for a saw trip will be: 1-2 crosscut saws, arborist saws, axe, hatchet, loppers, saw kit (wedges, lubricant, tools to repair a saw), shovel.

More information here: https://www.meetup.com/Wilderness-Corps ... 249157710/
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Re: Do a little or do a lot - help the trail crew in Sierra

Postby AlmostThere » Thu May 10, 2018 8:23 am

Predictions of the road to Courtright opening in time for the May 18 trip have not proved out, so we are switching to Kaiser's loop trail - 13 miles of trail will be cleared including the spur trail to Nellie Lake. Looking forward to walking in the snow over the peak with a saw. :nod:
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Re: Do a little or do a lot - help the trail crew in Sierra

Postby AlmostThere » Thu May 31, 2018 1:24 pm

This weekend we will be clearing the Sample Meadow to Twin Lakes trail in Kaiser Wilderness, and the short loop at Mary's Meadow. These are day trips and participants of one or both days will be welcome to car camp at Kokanee Work Center, where there will be a bathroom with hot shower. Details at the Wilderness Corps meetup group, https://www.meetup.com/Wilderness-Corps

It's National Trails Day! Come help celebrate by maintaining one with us.
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Re: Do a little or do a lot - help the trail crew in Sierra

Postby AlmostThere » Sun Jun 03, 2018 8:00 pm

Cleared the trail to Upper Twin Lake from Sample Meadow TH and the trail to Potter Pass this weekend. Nellie Lake was cleared on a prior weekend. Kaiser has a little more work to be done but we are waiting for meadows to dry out.

This weekend I will be scouting trails near Courtright Reservoir. The following weekend we are giving a crosscut certification training, for any who would like such certification. (Free training, as with all trainings for our volunteers)
I will be on trails in John Muir Wilderness with a saw for a week starting June 23.

Dinkey will be cleared late - road issues are keeping us from the main trailhead. Weekends starting in July we should be starting to work from Cliff TH at Courtright.
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Re: Do a little or do a lot - help the trail crew in Sierra

Postby rightstar76 » Mon Jun 04, 2018 12:22 am

Thank you AT for all that you do. And keeping the community informed. I would help out now if I could, but currently I can't. But for those who can, it sounds like a great opportunity to keep the trails open.
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Re: Do a little or do a lot - help the trail crew in Sierra

Postby AlmostThere » Mon Jun 04, 2018 7:25 am

rightstar76 wrote:Thank you AT for all that you do. And keeping the community informed. I would help out now if I could, but currently I can't. But for those who can, it sounds like a great opportunity to keep the trails open.


Our volunteers work year round on multiple programs to help the FS keep the forest open. There are positions for sedentary/disabled as well as active people. We have grant money to reimburse volunteers for mileage and food and gear that enables them to come on our work trips.

One weekend of service goes a long way to keeping the forest open and safe for all.

The biggest excuse we hear when people talk to us is a bad back. I have a gimpy shoulder and bad feet, and a painful hip. Pretty much all of us on trail crew have something we're nursing along - one of the FS guys tore up his shoulder skiing not long ago and he was out there helping. My significant other has a painful heel. It tires you out but the work is done with breaks and no one is asked to do tasks they cannot do, but there are so many different kinds of work that there really is something for everyone. Working visitor services is something anyone who can sit in a chair can do - we had a table at a trailhead on Memorial Day weekend educating visitors in resource protection aka LNT. We are staffing the High Sierra Ranger Station with volunteers this summer, otherwise it gets shut down and you'll have to get permits and info before you go over Kaiser Pass.

And if a person can't do any of that -- writing to Congress asking them to re-fund the Forest Service to restore staffing on the forest helps. Donating to one of the many volunteer orgs on the forest helps - Wilderness Corps, High Sierra Volunteer Trail Crew, Stewards of the Sierra, the list is long.

A teenager hiking down the trail stopped, took off his backpack, and took a turn on the crosscut saw. We thanked him mightily for the time. I loaned him my PPE. It gave my shoulders and back a rest. Every little bit helps.
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